Family Week Slides and Planning Starts for Family Week 2008!

This year’s Family Week was my second as a member of the Family
Pride Team (this year dubbed “Team Family Equality” on our bright
orange t-shirts). It was a thrilling experience to be back—better
prepared to navigate Provincetown, happy to speak with LGBTQ family
friends I made last year and meet new folks this time around. I was
especially excited to have much more time to plan and prepare for
our educational workshop series—to have time before and
afterwards to sit and talk at length with families who had issues,
ideas, questions, and concerns to share. Last year, when Family
Pride produced Family Week entirely on its own (with COLAGE
providing programming and events for youth), just as soon as I or
any other Family Pride staff member finished a talk or presentation
we had to zip off to some other location—the beach, the pier, a
hardware store, a copy shop two towns over! Anyone who’s involved
in Family Week planning and execution—be they Family Pride,
COLAGE, R Family Vacations or otherwise affiliated—can tell you
that it’s an uncanny combination of dedication to our families and
adrenaline/caffeine cocktails that make this week happen. As hard
as we sweat, as little as we sleep, there’s nothing more satisfying
than connecting with our families face-to-face and providing them
with an amazing opportunity to connect and grow.

Longtime Family Weekers have noticed many additions over the
years—almost all of which have been tied to the astounding growth
of the event from year to year. There are larger events, more
partners, and more amenities geared towards families in the town.
We estimate more than 600 families attended Family Week this year.
That’s a tremendous increase from the 15 or so families that first
gathered just 12 years ago! And with that growth comes change.

We have heard your initial feedback from Family Week 2007, and we
look forward to hearing
. Feedback is essential to building better programs and
activities for our families, and we are dedicated to incorporating
as much as of it as possible into our planning for next year.
Family Week 2008 is already in the works. We thank you for taking
the time to let us know how much you care about this very special
week for our families.

In the meantime, in those twelve long months between one Family
Week and the next, we invite you to connect with Family Pride in
all the other work that we do—advocating for our families through
our policy initiatives; activating parents in their local
communities through OUTSpoken Families; growing communities through
our work with local parents groups; building safer and more
inclusive schools for our children; increasing the visibility of
our families through local and national media; and providing the
best, most up-to-date and accurate research about our families
experiences to the world.

Thanks again and I look forward to my third Family Week next